The Real Heroes of Animal Rescue

Viral videos. Reddit. YouTube. SnapChat. Reality TV. Instant celebrity. 15 minutes of Fame. These are hailed on Huffington Post, and other publications as the heroes of animal rescue. The rescuer and the publisher often profiting handsomely for a one time act.

But there are real heroes among you. They aren't noticed. They aren't famous. They aren't rich.  They just help - Every. Single. Day.

Without being asked; without being told; without filming it; without broadcasting it; without profiting from it (often using their own hard earned money), they just show up, and make a difference and don't mind that they are mostly unappreciated by those around them.

They are sometimes ridiculed and bullied about their rescue efforts, and the time and (their own) money spent; frequently harrased by HOAs and Municipalities that do not prioritize sheltering, and of course threats from the animal abusers themselves.

They are your co worker; your local store's assistant; the person you pass by on the street - they might even be in your circle of friends. They are the tireless shelter workers, vet clinic doctors and techs; the person who puts out a can of food for a stray; the woman I saw feeding and watering a group of stray cats in a field who was being harrassed by the strip mall store owner whose stores backed up to the field. My co worker who not only rescued a mother cat and her kittens who another co worker threw boiling water at because she "didn't want dirty cats around", but reported her to both Management and the Police and put up with her husband's violent threats while he took care of the mama and her babies. And Beth, who just quietly rescues animals every day, and who helped us save the two threatened community cats with her "cat whisperer" abilities to get them into kennels, then carriers so we could transport them to safety. We could not have done many things without her quiet, dedicated help.

I am not religious, but I believe in compassion and kindness, and so I take strength from remembering the attitude of Mother Theresa, who kept her focus and worked hard every single day to help even one person that day. She knew that all of those little acts of kindness build up to make a big difference, and responded with that when people tried to say the problem was too big so what was the point in even trying; and kept right on working every day, in difficult conditions with little money. Why is it that we reward people like the "cash me" girl with millions of dollars, but people like Beth make barely enough to have a 200sf place to live and food for her and her animals? Someday I want someone to explain that to me.....

In the meantime, this blog is dedicated to Beth and all the Real Heroes of Animal Rescue out there. AMF Salutes You and Thanks You!

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